TRIBUTES have been paid to a “fantastic” father-of-three who died in a freak accident at work.

Paul Willett, of Taylor Drive, Lawford, was fitting a water pipe at a house in Ardleigh when it is thought he was electrocuted by a faulty towel rail.

He was discovered by the owners of the property in Station Road.

Police and the ambulance service attended but Mr Willett was pronounced dead at the scene.

The 47-year-old plumber had lived in Lawford for 18 years and a candle has been lit in his memory at St Mary’s Church where he was a warden.

This week his wife Sally and daughters Abigail, Olivia and Jessica paid tribute to a “passionate, loyal and determined” man.

Mrs Willett said: “Paul enjoyed life to the full.

“He was a family man at heart and a fantastic dad to Abigail, Olivia and Jessica.

“He was also a supportive, fun husband to be around and the perfect soulmate to me.

“Paul was at his happiest when out on family adventures and was always the life and soul of any party with his fantastic sense of humour and quick wit.

“He was also a massive film fan and enjoyed watching his films on the not so little TV.

“His girls will remember their number one daddy as being the playful, cheeky, funny man he was and for the numerous nicknames he had for them.

“He was so very proud of his beautiful, clever girls.

“Paul was adored by his family and loved all his family and friends in return.”

Mr Willett had run Willett Heating Limited, his own business, for four years.

“Paul was the best in the business at what he did,” said Mrs Willett.

“But what happened was a freak accident that should never have happened.

“He was working on a water pipe but there was a faulty towel rail and water and electricity don’t mix.

“Paul was one of the best and that has got to be remembered.”

Martin Moore, of Lushington Road, Manningtree, worked with Mr Willett and paid tribute to his “best friend”.

“He was my work partner and my drinking partner,” he said.

“Paul gave up a lot of time for so many people but he was obviously a very generous man.

“And that will show at the funeral because it will be absolutely packed.”

Rev Paul Mann, associate minister at St Mary’s Church had known Mr Willett for five years.

“My view of Paul was somebody very committed to his family and they are going to miss him as are we,” he said.

“He was so down to earth he touched all sorts of people and he had a real gift.

"Paul was one of the trustees of Love Light Romania and he did an enormous amount of work there such as fitting heating systems for orphaned children.

"He was such a significant part of so many peoples lives that we are all going to miss him."

Katie Poel, of East of England Ambulance Service, said Mr Willett is believed to have suffered a cardiac arrest.

Police were called to Station Road, Ardleigh, at around 12.30pm on Wednesday, June 9 and found no suspicious circumstances.

A spokesman for Essex County Council confirmed Mr Willett had died as a result of electrocution and there was to be an inquest.